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Sunday, Sep. 21, 2014

Method to madness isn't always found

Tuesday, June 11, 2002

Sometimes human nature gets the best of me. Or maybe I have misstated my dilemma. Sometimes the thought process behind our actions is enough to baffle anyone. Case in point...

Atlantic City, N. J., is the Las Vegas of the East Coast - home to a wide array of casino gambling and destination point daily for thousands upon thousands of gamblers and New York City day-trippers. Casino gambling is nothing new to Atlantic City, home of the Miss America pageant and only a hop, skip and jump away from millions of would-be gamblers.

Just so there's no confusion here - people go to Atlantic City to gamble. And when they arrive at the casinos, some even enjoy an alcoholic beverage or two while they are slugging quarters into the slot machines. And, as with most casinos, alcoholic beverages are free to the gamblers. There are direct correlations between consuming alcohol and losing money at the casino. So the drinks are free and abundant.

But you wouldn't know that simple fact if you listened because the cocktail servers at the casinos cannot say they offer alcohol. That's right. They can say the words coffee and juice but cannot say the words alcohol in their rounds. Now everyone knows they offer free drinks and the overwhelming majority of the patrons ask for and receive free drinks. But a 1977 state law prohibits the servers from mentioning they serve alcohol despite the fact that is exactly what they do.

Isn't human nature funny? The cocktail servers walk around and serve liquor by the gallons but by not speaking the words, we somehow think that will control the consumption by the gambling public.

I assume lawmakers back in 1977 had the best of intentions to control the casino booze. But isn't it a bit immature and foolish to think that by not speaking the words that will somehow change human nature or the nature of gamblers?

Maybe there's a method to this madness and maybe I find humor and irony where none exists. But if it quacks like a duck and walks like a duck, folks - it's a darned duck!



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